Safety and quality update: December 2021

14 December 2021

New this month: new safety alerts, webAIRS medication errors, Delirium Clinical Care Standard presentations, New Zealand hand hygiene compliance, Choosing Wisely preoperative pathology webinar, and Choosing Wisely Week 2022

New safety alerts

We've issued new safety alerts for:

  • Product defect correction: Fluid warming systems may leach aluminium

See all safety alerts

webAIRS update: Medication errors article

The article ‘Analysis of medication errors during anaesthesia in the first 4000 incidents reported to webAIRS’ Jee Young Kim, Matthew R Moore, Martin D Culwick, Jacqueline A Hannam, Craig S Webster and Alan F Merry, has been recently published in the Australian Society of Anaesthetists (ASA) ‘Anaesthesia and Intensive Care’ journal.

Medication error is a well-recognised cause of harm to patients undergoing anaesthesia. From the first 4000 reports in the webAIRS anaesthetic incident reporting system, we identified 462 reports of medication error.

Read the article

Are you contributing to quality anaesthesia? Visit the webAIRS website to register or email

ACSQHC Delirium Clinical Care Standard - Launch presentations available

Proceedings are now available from the launch of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Healthcare’s Delirium Clinical Care Standard, endorsed by ANZCA. The launch took place at the Australasian Delirium Association Conference, ‘DECLARED 2021’.  Presenters included Associate Professor Gideon Caplan, President of the Australasian Delirium Association; Professor Susan Kurrle, geriatrician and Curran Chair in Health Care of Older People in the Faculty of Medicine and Health at the University of Sydney; Anne Cumming, Principal Advisor, Cognitive Impairment at the Commission; and Dr Carolyn Hullick, Clinical Director from the Commission and emergency physician.

View presentations

New Zealand national hand hygiene compliance report released

The Health Quality and Safety Commission New Zealand has released a national hand hygiene compliance report for 1 July to 31 October 2021, covering 20 district health boards and 21 private surgical hospitals.

View the report

Choosing Wisely Webinar: Preoperative Pathology Project at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital (SCUH) – 2 February 2022

As part of the Choosing Wisely Australia, Champion Health Services Monthly Webinar series, you are invited to a Zoom webinar on 2 Feb 2022, 03:00 PM AEDT.

SCUH will be demonstrating how to Choose Wisely when ordering preoperative pathology. They will be presenting data demonstrating the savings that can be made in cost, to the environment and in man-hours when evidence based guidelines are implemented. The webinar will last for 30 minutes, with a Q&A session after the 20-minute presentation.

Register in advance

Planning for Choosing Wisely Week 2022 – engagement toolkit released

Choosing Wisely Week will be held on 28 February to 6 March 2022. Choosing Wisely Week is an opportunity for health services to promote local projects that support the reduction of unnecessary tests, treatments and procedures. NPS Medicinewise has developed a toolkit to assist members and supporters to celebrate.

Download Toolkit

Last updated 16:09 12.07.2022